Friday 1 June 2012

The Mute Swan family from the Lido, with their seven cygnets, have been making bolder forays on to the Long Water to get away from the other three swan families on the Serpentine. Today the male swan had a standoff with the resident male on the Long Water, and they spent a long time circling each other at close quarters with their wings raised menacingly. It didn't come to an actual fight: the resident swan gave up and retreated farther up the lake.

Usually the winner of these standoffs is the owner of the territory, but perhaps this time the presence of a large family swung the balance by making the invaders look stronger.

I have been trying to photograph the Great Tits and Blue Tits feeding their young. It is sadly difficult: they rush about madly, they are usually hidden by the leaves, or one bird is in focus and the other out of focus. This poor picture is the best of a rotten bunch. Well, I will keep trying.

Young Starlings, in their attractive pale grey-brown plumage, are much easier to photograph. They sit confidently in the open, and when their parents are not in sight they simply wait for them to arrive with food.

The Mandarin family have lost another duckling, and are down to two. When I saw them they were imprudently crossing the Long Water, right in the open, but fortunately the gulls were otherwised engaged and this time they made it to safety.

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